AIM Instances

The following description is based on the original description from Kazuo Iwama, Eiji Miyano and Yuichi Asahiro which is available here from the DIMACS ftp-site.

The AIM instance are all generated with a particular Random-3-SAT instance generator [AIM96]. The particularity is that the generator yes-instances and no-instances independently for wide ranges. So its primary role is to provide such instances that the conventional random generation can hardly generate. The generator runs in a randomized fashion, so that it essentially different from those generated in some deterministic fashion or those translated from other problems.

As a result, the following set of instances includes The instances are named as aim-xxx-y_y-zzzz-j where For each parameter, four instances are included in the benchmark set. for example, aim-100-2_0-no-1 through aim-100-2_0-no-4, are four no-instances with 100 variables and 2.0 clause/variable ratio. In total, there are 18 sets of instances with n = 50, 100, 200; for the yes instances clause / variable ratios are taken from 1.6, 2.0, 3.4, and 6.0; for the no instances they are taken from 1.6 and 2.0.

Instance hardness

It should be noted that all the instances can be solved with polynomial preprocessing (using binary failed literals). Therefore, these instances cannot be considered as intrinsically hard and appear not to be very good benchmark instances.

Complete algorithms appear to perform very well on these instances. For example, SATZ (version 41 from SATLIB) solves all the instances in at most 2 backtracks. Nevertheless, some local search algorithms like the algorithms based on the WalkSAT family and the GSAT variants, show a very poor performance on the instances with low clause / variable ratio; in particular for ratios 1.6 and 2.0. Yet, local search algorithms using clause weighting schemes appear to solve these instances quite easily [CI95]. Therefore, it would be interesting to investigate the reasons for these facts. Possibly, it is due to very large plateaus in the search space of the problems at low clause / variable ratios.


The instances have originally been contributed to the DIMACS benchmark set by Kazuo Iwama, Eiji Miyano and Yuichi Asahiro.


[AIM96] Y. Asahiro, K.~Iwama, and E.~Miyano Random Generation of Test Instanzes with Controlled Attributes. In D.S.Johnson and M.A.Trick, editors, Cliques, Coloring, and Satisfiability: The Second DIMACS Implementation Challenge. Vol. 26 of DIMACS Series on Discrete Mathematics and Theoretical Computer Science, pages 377--394. American Mathematical Society, 1996.pages 127-154, 1996
[CI95] B. Cha and K. Iwama. Adding New Clauses for Faster Local Search. In Proceedings of AAAI'96}, pages 332--337. MIT Press, 1996.